The day started out perfectly. It was a beautiful Saturday morning, about 5 months into the pandemic. The gym had just recently reopened and I was slowly getting back into my routine. So that was pretty exciting.
I woke up a little after 6:50 AM, a few minutes before my alarm went off at 7, so I decided to lay there and run through my day again in my head.
Wake up time at 7, lay there and think for about 10 minutes to replay the goals set for the day — a semi-normal routine depending on how rushed my morning is. After that, pull myself out of bed, down my bottle of water, pop some vitamins and then head to the gym. Come back, run through a few business stuff and then head off to the day job for 10 hours. Easy peasy lemon squeezy, right? That seemed straightforward and simple enough.
So fast forward, I got in a good sweat session at the gym, I think It was a chest and shoulders day. Came back, showered and got dressed, returned a few emails, spoke to a couple contractors and completed some work. Everything was going as scheduled. I was feeling pumped up, productive and excited. The best way to start a morning. Nothing was gonna fuck this day up.
Is That You Knocking Rona?
Then dammit, I started feeling stuffy. I was about 90% sure it was just my allergies and not the rona — fingers and toes crossed. “Alright cool, I’ve got an app for this”. A few squirts of the old Flonase should bust my nussy wide open. Bottle acquired (squirt, squirt. Squirt, squirt). “Hm, maybe I should double up?!” (Squirt, squirt. Squirt, squirt). Allergy protocol initiated.
I walked by the mirror and realized my eyes were bloodshot, and as red as cinnamon fireball candy. I was now 80% sure it wasn’t the rona. You know, red eyes are not a good look in a hypersensitive covid environment, but of course, I was out of eye drops.
Ok cool, no worries. I still had like 45 minutes so I could stop and get one, after breakfast. As a matter of fact, if I left immediately, I could stop by the pharmacy down the street from the hospital to get my eye drops. Then I could grab breakfast next door, and still have time left over to inhale some of it before my shift. Done! That’s what I’ll do. Plan amended and day uninterrupted.
Shoes keys badge door, walk walk walk, jumped in my car and pulled out. I had my audiobook going, but I was trapped in a turnt up kinda mood, so I decided to put on some Popcaan (the Jamaican DJ, not the snack). “Aright, seet deh”. “Some ‘Ova dweet’ a dweet”. The morning vibe still going strong, and I was on my way.
Traffic light traffic light traffic light, all these crazy South Florida drivers, please don’t kill me. Annd 10 minutes later I was at Walgreens.
I Made It To Walgreens
Okay. I hopped out of my car, my body mostly on autopilot, and I walked in. I was a little rushed, but still casual. Smiling a little bit like a crazy person, I may have also been talking to myself. But fuck it, I was in a good mood. I threw up my customary “hey what’s up” head nod to the cashier, and then I saw everyone in the socially distanced line staring at me like my zipper was down and, you know what, was hanging out. So I kept walking “hey, sorry no autographs. I’m in a rush. Have a good day.” (I said that part in my head). “Except for you in the back lady. I know what that look means. I can see it through your mask.” “Anyway, woosah, peace out”
That was kinda weird. I kept walking. “oh shit, candy aisle. Don’t look”. I got pass and ducked into the cereal aisle, headed to the back of the store. I got a little nostalgic on my way pass all those sugar-filled boxes. You know what I miss?! That s’mores cereal that had those sharp square bites and marshmallow bits. Mmm. It was like eating delicious shards of glass for breakfast, or whenever you had it. You would have a bowl, maybe two, while you desperately try to avoid cuts on the roof of your mouth. It sounds like a high price to pay. But they were fucking delicious and worth it.
“Hey. Focus! Eye drops”
“Ah. Right”. So I kept walking. Then I noticed this dude at the end of the aisle staring me down like I owed him money. So I threw him an “a wahh yuh problem my yute” narrow eyed chin raise. The profanities of my motherland slowly taking form in my frontal cortex. Process complete…Weaponizing…
“No! Don’t do that.”
So I switched aisles and kept walking. Foot steps foot steps foot steps, “Here we go! Eye drops!!”. (More internal monologue) “hmm. I might as well get 2, right?!” “Oh Visine, where are yo…?” “excuse me, may I help you?” “If you need directions. The way out of my business is a sharp left the other way”. I said in my head, as I stared down a group of glaring onlookers who were peering down like I was a loose silverback and they were about to call the zoo to tell them they found me. (Internal monologue) “You do know I can see you looking from behind those right?!” I looked over at them what-the-fuckly, with one partially ducked behind a shelf, standing there looking like he flunked out of spy school. “Ok, I’m leaving this place.”
“Yes, that would be best”
“Ah, here we go.” I got the eye drops and headed to the register, ignoring a few more tourists along the way. Got to the register, and guy stopped and, yes you guessed it, stared into my daylights and just stood there like a poorly shaven Bambi. “Just cool it bro, I’m not even famous yet. Just cash these. I need to leave, I’m hungry”
Cashier: “did you find everything you needed.”
Me: “Yes I did, thank you”
He narrated the total, as I pulled out my card and proceeded to try to remember my pin. (Beep beep beep beep beep). I could see him scowling at me at the corner of my eye as I went through the prompts. So I paused on the last one, pressed it and then looked up quickly. He almost got whiplash looking away which was just hilarious.
So as I walked out coolly and all calm-like, surrounded in my force field deflecting all the eye daggers being thrown at me. Actually, we’re in the south, so it was probably more like eye bullets. As I walked back, pressing my key fob twice, and then an additional four unnecessary times; I popped in, looked into the mirror and realized I wasn’t wearing a mask.
“Oooohhhhhh”. “Well that makes perfect sense”. All those looks of disdain, disapproval and scorn slowly all started making perfect sense. I drove out of the parking lot a little ashamed and slightly amused, forgetting my breakfast in the process. And as I drove to the hospital to start my day, a thought ran through my mind. You know, that’s a perfect example that, people can indeed be tremendous assholes. But then there are other times when it’s really just you.